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Dojoji; Shiroku as the Spirit of a Jealous Woman

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Utagawa Toyokuni, Japanese, (1769–1825)
Dojoji; Shiroku as the Spirit of a Jealous Woman, 1820
Ink on Paper
14 11/16 in. x 9 13/16 in. (373.06 mm x 249.24 mm)

Object Type: Print
Technique: Wood-block Printing
Period: Edo (Japan, 1615-1868)
Credit Line: Gift of Mr. and Mrs. Fred Marer
Accession Number: 93.3.5

In the final dance of “Musume Dojoji,” the rejected woman is transformed into a demon / oni. Here the actor Onoe Matsusuke III (1784-1849) depicts her fury as she encircles the Dojoji bell, carrying it off over a roiling waterway as the temple monks chant, “We ask all the crowned dragons in the world to please give us their mercy and accept our prayers. Please grant no place on this earth where the monster snake can live.”

Kanji printed in the upper right corner.

Colored ink on paper. Oban woodblock print.

Object Description
Edo period Japanese color woodblock print with an image of the kabuki actor Onoe Matsusuke III (1805-1851) playing the demonic spirit of a jealous woman. In Japanese legend, the Buddhist monk Anchin tried to escape a love-crazed admirer, Kiyohime, by hiding under a temple bell. Here the upset Kiyohime perches on the bell and turns into a demonic serpent. Subsequently, her enraged passion heats the bell killing Anchin and herself. This tragic tale has inspired many noh and kabuki plays.

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